Colposcopy involves performing a detailed visual examination of the cervix. It is also possible to check the vagina and external genitalia.
Colposcopy is a complementary diagnostic technique that is performed when there are various alterations in the results of a cervical smear test. Visualizing the cervix in this way will allow identifying changes in the morphology of the epithelium that lines the cervix and direct the biopsies to these specific areas.
How it is performed?
A device called a colposcope is used. It is an instrument similar to a microscope and has a system of lenses that allow increasing the size of the studied image to observe it in detail. The woman should be placed in the same position as to perform a cervical smear test, that is, lying face up on a stretcher with support to place the legs. With the knees bent and the legs separated, the genital area is exposed.
With a speculum, which is a device that is inserted into the vagina and opened, the uterine cervix is visualized. Once the cervix is exposed, the vaginal secretions are cleaned with gauze. After the cervix and vagina are washed with an acetic acid solution which not only removes the remains of existing mucus but produces transient changes in the tissue of the cervix that allows it to be studied properly.
Generally, the examination is completed by dyeing the cervix with a brown liquid (Lugol solution) that allows identifying with great precision places on the cervix where there may be alterations since these anomalous areas do not capture the dye well and therefore differ significantly from the tissue healthy which turns dark brown.
The examination is performed with different lenses that provide different types of magnification and with the placement of color filters, usually green, which highlights the presence of blood vessels. Colposcopes can have systems that allow recording images in photographs, for further study or to compare the evolution of treatment.
At Harley Street Hospital, we have the best doctors to perform colposcopy. Book a consultation to get a specialist´s checkup.